Happiness trumps stress

A healthy workforce is a productive workforce. Head of HR – Asia-Pacific for Davita Healthcare Sandeep Girotra explains the business case for developing and championing health and wellness initiatives across the workforce

What is the business case for employers providing or expanding wellness initiatives for staff?

As the saying goes, “a healthy workforce is a productive workforce”. Having healthy employees is as important as having competent employees. Physical health counts as much as mental agility and competence in making a strong workforce. Needless to say, our focus should therefore be to create a work environment that fosters good health.

What are the effects of an unhealthy workforce?

Conversely, an unhealthy workforce will have limited mind space to devote towards work and that’s bound to affect their own and the company’s performance. There is a strong correlation.

Is stress simply a by-product of working hard? Is it something companies should just accept – or even encourage?

I wholeheartedly disagree. Working hard and stress don’t necessarily go hand in hand. You’ve got to enjoy what you are doing. If you like your work, you don’t mind putting in that extra effort and that doesn’t cause any stress. Happiness never causes stress!

It’s only when you don’t enjoy your work that you don’t give 100%, and the results disappoint you. That’s when you are stressed. It’s a simple cause and effect situation.

How good is the average business at providing appropriate health and welfare programmes?

Businesses that only measure success by quantity, and not by quality, create an artificial and unnecessary stress for employees. We need to instead build environments that create happiness, cultures that motivate employees to work and be stress-free. That’s when they enjoy what they do and you will be surprised at what they can achieve then.

It’s no different from what you practice with your kids at home!

What will you be discussing at the Employee Health and Wellness Congress 2017?

The prime focus will be on what we can do to keep our workplace environment happy, so that you get the best out of all. Davita takes pride in calling ourselves “a Village” and we are all teammates – with a strong sense of community and belongingness. That’s unique about our culture and binds us all together. We are a community first, and a company second.

Health is the most important aspect of one’s life. The rest can all be managed and turned around for good. So keep yourself healthy and it’s very much in your control. No one else can take that away from us. Stay healthy and spread happiness around you!


Sandeep Girotra

Over a 24-year career, Sandeep Girotra has worked across a range of Indian and multinational companies, including SIEL, Dupont, GE, and HSBC. He currently heads HR for Davita Healthcare Partners in the Asia-Pacific region, based in Singapore.

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